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Friday, August 28, 2015

WIP & On Display - MV Box. Plus: Review - Fernando Ruiz Painting Class

With the wood burning behind me I jumped right into staining. Which will have an interesting effect on the wood burning...

Suddenly a lot of the dark lines become light and the whole thing flips into a photo negative type deal o_O
 I have a trick for that later, for now though lets get some color into this, faded and subtle but still enough to draw the eye.
 Next I'll sand it all lightly and varnish it to kick the colors back a bit...
 One more step. So its all really loosely defined because we lost a lot of the dark lines from the burning. Well, they are also recessed so I'm going to do a quick oil wash (over the gloss varnish) and wipe it off once it has dried for a bit to bring back the shapes and then I'll seal it with a spray gloss...
BAM-WHAT?! Done. Its not an even finish and I want that because this thing is going to get a lot of dings and fading and scuffs due to being a travel case. After a while it will look antiqued and awesome. Hope you liked this now, onto a brief review of a painting class I took back in June with Fernando Ruiz :)

Fernando has a very cool way of painting. He basically uses a lot of retarder in his acrylics to make them act like oils so he can do a quick color sketch of a whole mini and finish with a wet on wet technique and "save" areas he likes with a quick blast of a hair dryer. It makes for a very efficient and fearless style because if you mess up and the paint is still wet you can clean it up with a damp brush! What takes me 40+ hours takes him about 24. Here is a look at my palettes for the 3 areas I painted.
The paint was still active after 24 hours, and you could freeze it and come back to it later if you need too. So there is another save point for your mixing o_O Genius. Why pill containers? Believe it or not they work better for keeping the paint active longer than even pallets with mini half round wells. No idea why, but they do - we all tried it out on our regular pallets and the paint didn't stay active as long. Bloody Euro witchcraft if you ask me. Screw it. I'm in, dollar store Excel gum packs here I come...~nom~ ~nom~ ~nom~

We all painted a Teutonic knight in his course. Not to a finished standard, but just areas to get a feel for his technique. Here is what I was able to knock out just in the course and these are just the color sketches without the last step which I'll explain after. Day one: face...
Day two: Hood and, shirt and under padding... Much faster to sketch colors once you get his technique :)
And these are just the sketches for light and shadow placement. The last step is the wet on wet step. basically he takes a water brush to glaze the area where colors were sketched with a mix of retarder and water then he blends his colors (already mixed from the sketch and still active on the pallet) on and smooths the transitions right over the retarder and water mix. When he is happy he sets it with the hair dryer.

Its brilliant. I think this technique would be wasted on the details of smaller scales like 28-32mm, but on parts like cloaks, broad areas of skin and armor it would work quite well. On larger areas and minis it is like magic! I think that I have added a new awesome weapon for freehand and other tricks to my arsenal. I don't want to copy Fernando, but like I did with James Wappel's technique I plan to add this to my style and I am really happy to have had the opportunity to take the course. I will take any others that come to Toronto in the future and encourage anyone close by to come out when they are announced!

Also, here is a fun charity initiative if you are looking to contribute your skills to one: Little Heroes For Little Heroes

Next post: Back to a little Vignette that got side tracked and some more fun projects like more Star Wars Rebels minis for The Agent of Chaos :)  Thanks for looking! Hit me up in the comments, check the blog roll and remember; you can't spell paint without a little pain!